In the league of stark and unforgiving realism, here's a new chart-topper from Danish writer/director Tobias Lindholm. Kapringen tells of a moderate size Danish cargo ship which is attacked by Somali pirates in the Indian Ocean. Among the crew of only seven are two Danish sailors of seemingly no particular importance, the cook Mikkel (Pilou Asbæk) and the machinist Jan (Roland Møller). As ship owner Peter Ludvigsen (Søren Malling) opens negotiations with the pirates, instructed by his advisor to be meticulous and not yielding, day by day goes by with our two sailors trapped in a harrowing ordeal of insecurity and fear.
And this insecurity and fear is highly palpable for the viewer as well, largely owing to the frightening relevance of this story; these kinds of piracies have been frequent during the last few years. Furthermore, Lindholm's script feels remarkably authentic, and we're brought closer to life on a hijacked ship than I hope any of my readers will ever be. Pilou Asbæk's performance is one of great empathy, whereas Søren Malling's work represents is a great dissection of the responsibility and loneliness of an executive position. Both characters must endure long periods of almost unbearable pressure - albeit of completely opposite nature, and the juxtaposition of these two is among the strongest aspects of Kapringen. A film which demands your full attention, and ends up making you appreciate your own life a little bit more.